So, Evan and I have been working a lot with puzzles lately. The teacher in me, started to worry, when I noticed that he was having a hard time understanding how puzzles worked. Not that I expect him to be perfect in all things, by any means, just want to make sure I give him as much opportunities as possible to learn. So everyday, for a few weeks now, during Carter's morning naps, we have been working on puzzles, threading shoe laces through beads (and similar fine motor skills work) and matching games. I have tried to show him different ways of approaching puzzles such as looking at the puzzle first before breaking it apart to get an idea of what the whole should look like, noticing colors of the nubby parts to matching pieces, noticing shapes, animals etc that look like they would go together and so on.
He really is starting to get the hang of it, that or we have done the same puzzles over and over again that he has the pieces memorized. But either way, he is really starting to enjoy working on puzzles with me.
It is said that the best way a child can learn is by teaching someone else. The other day, I was checking my email, while Evan was on the floor threading beads onto a lace when I heard him talking to the cat. I turn around and he was explaining to the cat how to put the puzzle together. I fortunately had my camera charging at the computer so I could document his first teaching experience. He started by showing her all the animals on the puzzle, then explained how to find matching colors on the pieces and how to match up the bodies of the animals He was the cutest thing.
A funny side note is that the cat really hates him. When he comes around her, she immediately starts to growl and hiss. I don't blame her, he is a very active little boy and even though we have shown him how to "pet" her and to "love" on her, he doesn't quite understand that the cat doesn't like it when he gets in her face and yells at her! He loves to get her hissing and will proclaim, "I'm picking on the cat, I'm picking on the cat!"
So, here he is, standing beside her with the puzzle, teaching her how to do it. As if cats do puzzles. But apparently in his mind Maya must play with puzzles in her free time. And the best part, was that Maya was laying there quiet and gentle and allowing him to be in her face. As if she knew that he was genuinely being nice to her!
Evan has developed some other teaching qualities also. He loves to boss people around, show Carter how to do things the "right" way, he loves being the center of attention and he thinks he knows it all. But, wait a second, those are all first born tendencies and German tendencies (I'm German I can say things like that!) so we will see what comes of these teaching moments!
But for right now, I will sit back and enjoy watching him teach the cat some new tricks!! Who knows, maybe Evan knows something we don't. We think cats sleep all day, but instead they work on puzzles in their free time!